Colombia's Coffee Country - Salento to Manizales.
August 8th - 16th, 2015
I'm so excited about this trip I don't know where to begin! The hotels are amazing. The scenery is gorgeous. The people are some of the friendliest I've ever met... anywhere. And it's the middle of the dry season with average temperatures in the low 80's and twelve hours of sunlight every day.
$1599 includes airfare from JFK on Avianca, all air taxes and fuel surcharges, transfers between all destinations in Colombia, four nights in Salento tin the gorgeous La Moreleja Hotel with breakfasts, two nights at the La Quinta ranch with breakfasts, lunches and dinner two nights at the Termales de Otona Hotel with breakfasts and a pre-departure orientation.
Salento is a pretty little Spanish colonial town nestled in the Andes in the heart of Colombia's coffee country. It's a "tourist" town only in good ways. It's got everything you need and it hasn't been discovered by Americans yet so it's not overpriced... far from it! There's plenty to do in and around town... coffee plantation tours (including a really good one 10 minutes walk from the center of town), horseback riding, hiking in the Cocora Valley with 200 foot tall palm trees that look like something out of a Dr. Suess book and a cafe stop half way around the walk with more hummingbirds than you can count. And don't be surprised if you see Juan Valdez walking down the street... seriously.
Manizales is one of the three main cities that make up the Coffee Triangle, and it's got a cool vibe. The public transit system is a series of ultra modern cable cars that criss cross the mountain ridges to take you to the various neighborhoods... for 75 cents! Manizales is a quaint, mountainous city that has the look and feel of a European university town. Home to 6 colleges and universities, it is also the regional center of art and culture, with the Manizales International Theater and Jazz Festivals.
Hotel La Moreleja. A gem of a boutique hotel in the heart of Salento. This will be our base for four days while we explore the town and surrounding countryside.
La Quinta is a traditional cattle ranch that extends to the foothills of the Los Nevados Mountains National Park, located in the Colombian Coffee Region. It has it's own thermal water baths, seven amazing natural waterfalls and spectacular scenery - perfect for horseback riding, hiking, relaxation, meditation and adventure. Their chef will prepare all our meals during our two night stay here, while we relax before our trip to Manizales and the thermal baths of El Otono.
Hotel Termales el Otoño in Manizales, Colombia. Just 25 minutes from the city proper, with stunning views. A great base to explore the city from... Once that's done, reward yourself with a dip at one of the thermal pools heated by the nearby volcano. Paradise.